Dallas Mavericks free agency grade: JaVale McGee signing

Dallas Mavericks, JaVale McGee
Dallas Mavericks, JaVale McGee / Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Mavericks missed out on their top priority as Jalen Brunson agreed to a deal with the New York Knicks, but it did not stop them from making moves. The team’s biggest weakness in the postseason was at the five. Dallas lost the rebound battle in every series, and they struggled to protect the rim. The Mavs traded for Christian Wood to improve their big man depth, but it did not solve their rim protection issues.

JaVale McGee agreed to a three-year deal worth $20.1 million with a player option in year three, according to Shams Charania. He cannot sign until after the moratorium is lifted on July 6, but it appears the seven-footer is locked in with the Mavericks.

McGee fills a need and brings some valuable experience to the Mavericks. Here is a closer look at what he brings, and how the Mavs did in their first free-agent signing for the 2022 offseason.

Dallas Mavericks free agency grade: JaVale McGee signing

McGee averaged 9.2 points, 6.7 rebounds, and 1.1 blocks in 15.8 minutes per game last season for the Suns. The 34-year-old has played 14 NBA seasons, and he has averaged over 20 minutes per game just three times. McGee told Tim MacMahon he plans to be the Mavericks starting center, but fans should only expect him to play around 15 minutes per game.

McGee will be impactful in those minutes. He protects the rim, rebounds, and gives Dallas another rim-rolling threat. The seven-footer is a significant upgrade over Dwight Powell on both ends of the floor, and he is a three-time NBA champion.

Dallas Mavericks grade for JaVale McGee deal: B+

The Mavericks solved one of their biggest postseason issues by adding McGee, but his minutes will be limited when the playoffs roll back around. They used at least part, if not all, of their taxpayer mid-level to add the 34-year-old on a three-year deal. McGee makes the Mavericks better next season, but they used their top asset to handout in free agency on adding a guy that might only play 10 minutes per game in the postseason.

The Dallas Mavericks still need to add wing depth and another ball-handler. JaVale McGee is a fantastic fit that should help the team stay in contention for a top-four spot in the Western Conference, but his postseason track record of seeing his minutes limited lowered the grade to a B-plus.

The Mavericks are done making moves, so stay tuned for all the latest rumors, news, and analysis at The Smoking Cuban.

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